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Travel & Tourism

Mid Ulster Council VICs score 100%

Mid Ulster District Council staff have achieved an outstanding 100% score in the most recent round of mystery shopping visits to the areas’ Visitor Information Centres (VICs).

During the visits, premises and staff are assessed across a number of customer experience criteria including presentation, welcome and personal skills, needs identification, and problem solving, all of which focus on fully meeting the needs of visitors to the centres, providing positive and relevant information that helps them with their enquiries.

Cookstown Visitor Information Centre staff Jelena Reis and Linda Blenkinsopp pictured at the VIC which recently achieved a 100% score for service provided to its customers.

100% Best Possible Service

Chair of Mid Ulster District Council, Councillor Sean McPeake, congratulating the staff on their achievement, said, “To be at the heart of our community means that people are at the centre of what we do as a Council, and our people – our staff – are key to delivering the best possible services for our residents and visitors.

“All the staff in our Visitor Information Centres across Cookstown, Magherafelt and Dungannon are fully engaged and committed to this aim. Their hard work, passion and dedication is evidenced in the recent mystery shopping 100% score achieved in our centres. You can be sure that when you visit our VICs, you’ll get 100% quality service!”

The surveys, carried out by Insight Mystery Shopping, showed that staff put visitors at ease, providing a ‘terrific experience’ that ‘created a warm welcome and demonstrated a willingness to help.’ Staff were also praised for their knowledge and insight into the area and the personalised advice that they were able to provide.

Find Out More

Whether you’re a local or a visitor from further afield, the staff at the Visitor Information Centres at the Burnavon, Cookstown; Ranfurly House, Dungannon and The Bridewell, Magherafelt can help you explore more of the hidden heritage of the District to really open your eyes to what’s on or to help you make the most of your visit to the area, with a wide range of free tourist information available. To start with, visit here for more information.

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Travel & Tourism

Targeted Consultation on Taxi Fares Review Launched

Infrastructure Minister Nichola Mallon has launched a targeted consultation on a taxi fares review as part of her ongoing plans to assist the taxi industry as they rebuild following the Covid restrictions.

The Department has written to all stakeholders, including the Consumer Council, to seek their views on proposals to increase the maximum taxi fare tariff across Northern Ireland.

Minister Mallon said: “Throughout the pandemic I have engaged regularly with the taxi sector and acknowledged the pressures that they have been under. I provided £16.7million of support to existing drivers from the two financial support schemes and regulatory support that I put in place last year and I remain committed to working with the sector in continuing to monitor the impact of Covid restrictions on them.

“Last week I announced an Action Plan to provide further support to the taxi industry and a key part of that was the intention to consult on taxi fares, as this was a specific concern raised during our engagement with the taxi sector.

“The targeted consultation launching today is aimed at people involved in the taxi industry in Northern Ireland, including taxi operators and drivers.  It will also consider consumers who use taxi services through engagement with the Consumer Council.  My Department has written directly today to all those in the sector and the Consumer Council and I would encourage responses by 5.00pm on Friday 15 October.

“Once the responses have been analysed my officials will provide a report for my consideration.  Following consideration of the feedback, I would hope to be in a position to implement any proposed changes before the Christmas 2021 period, subject to the necessary legislative changes.”

The consultation documents are available on the DfI website at: Taxi Fare Increase Targeted Public Consultation

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Travel & Tourism

Grab The Balmoral Show App To Open New Experiences

Download the Balmoral Show App ahead of the 2021 Balmoral Show in partnership with Ulster Bank.

The app is a handy pocket tool to help guide you on your visit around the Show featuring trade stands and key attractions. To stop you missing out on the action, it also features the Show timetable of events across the action packed four days.

Users will also be able to live stream all livestock and equine classes from the Cattle Rings, Sheep Shearing Fold, Horse Rings 1 & 2 as well as the Main Arena. 

Zara Hughes, RUAS encourages visitors to download the Balmoral Show App ahead of the 2021 Show.

The app is available for download from Monday 20th September on Apple Store and Google Play. Simply search for “Balmoral Show” and download!

The 152nd Balmoral Show takes place from Wednesday 22nd September to Saturday 25th September at Balmoral Park, Lisburn. Tickets are selling fast and must be purchased online in advance at Conditions of entry can be found online at

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